Mongolian beef isn’t a traditional Mongolian dish and my version is different than you might get in a restaurant or traditional family dining. The ‘real deal’ often uses leeks, a bit of sugar and is specific about what types of nut oil and sauces (usually oyster) to use.
I’m a bigger fan of using whatever is in my fridge!
The final product is salty, savory and the slightest hint of sweet. It stores well in the fridge and can easily be reheated in a pan (and also tastes great).
When cooking the beef, there are two cardinal ‘rules’:
- Don’t be afraid of heat. Cook it hot, hot, hot. It will stick to the pan at first but it will slowly release itself. Don’t stir it right away – you’re trying to develop some color and a bit of char is just fine (there’s a photo below).
- Don’t crowd the pan. Too much meat will change the cooking process from frying to steaming; this will produce a less flavorful final result. Cook your meat in batches and warm it all together at the end.
Green Onion/ Mongolian Beef Ingredients
- 8 ounces (half pound) beef. You can use any type; many insist on the tenderloin because of it’s texture but I far rather any other cut as they will be more flavorful. I’ve used a small roast and a small blade steak for this on different occasions and both worked well (just remove any of the ‘silver bits’ – the thin layers of fat which are chewing and don’t add to the flavor.
- 2 tablespoons fat such as lard, coconut oil, non-gmo vegetable oil (but avoid olive oil as it won’t handle the high heat this is cooked in).
- As many green onions/ leeks/ scallions or chives as you’d like. We used the tops of 4 large green onions for this.
- 1-2 inches ginger, chopped fine (with or without skin on it)
- 3 cloves of garlic, chopped fine.
- Siracha/ hot sauce to taste
- 1 teaspoon corn starch
- 2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon water
- 1 teaspoon rice wine or mirin
2 tablespoons of oyster sauce or hoisin
- 1/2 teaspoon sesame or other nut oil
- 05.-1 tablespoon honey
- Salt and pepper to taste
Green Onion/ Mongolian Beef Instructions
- Cut beef into small strips and place in a large bowl.
- Add corn starch, hot sauce, 1 teaspoon soy sauce, water and rice/wine mirin to beef. Set aside for at least 30 minutes and up to one-hour.
- As the beef marinades, you’ll have time to prep your other ingredients or make rice. Rice pilaf is an amazing side dish for this that’s also easy to make.
- In a large bowl, combine the oyster sauce/ mirin, remaining soy, sesame/ nut oil, and honey in a bowl. Stir well.
- Add green onions to the sauce you just made in step 4.
- Heat a heavy pan (I use a cast iron frying pan) over medium-high heat (i.e. 8 of 10).
- Add fat to pan and wait until just before it smokes (this will happen quickly if you heated the pan well first).
- Add half the ginger/ garlic to the pan and stir rapidly for 5 seconds (this will prevent burning while also adding flavor to the oil).
- Scatter one-third to one-half the meat in the pan, making sure not to crowd it.
- When meat is complete, set on a plate and move to the side. Continue to cook the remaining beef.
- Just before serving add all beef to the pan (to reheat it), stir for about a minute. Add the sauce-onion mixture and stir for 30 seconds before removing from heat and serving in a large bowl (you can use the one you dirtied with the sauce).
What would you serve with this?